Editing your closet is key to making fabulous outfits. Unfortunately, my closet is on the miniature side of the scale (oh Kimora Lee Simmons, I have DREAMS of your closet!) so I'm forced to keep only what I need. I frequently give away or throw out pieces that no longer make me look my best but I’ve recently learned that my old clothes can MAKE me money (to buy more clothes!!)
Enter, consignment selling. If you're not familiar with the concept, you provide your lovingly cared for items to a consignment store where they'll sell it and provide you with a percentage of the profits, which can be up to 50% of the selling price. Consignment stores vary from chic boutiques accepting only brand name designer items, to a more eclectic mix where you can find the good, the bad and the ugly in fashion. They also aren’t just for ladies clothes, you can find consignment stores that accept shoes, purses, accessories, menswear, children’s clothing and toys, furniture and more!
I brought two pairs of shoes to consign on my first visit. The price to sell them was determined mutually by the owner and myself. The store will keep it at the agreed upon price for 30 days, at which point they’ll reduce the price by 25%. If after 60 days the item hasn’t sold, it’ll be given to charity. If (I mean, WHEN – positive thinking!) my shoes sell, I will receive cash for them! Stores differ in their consignment policies, one store in my city will create an online account where you can track the pieces you’re consigning, and the amount you’re making!
Consigning is a brilliant idea, particularly for shopaholics (you have how many black shoes/pants?!), but also for those who may have lost weight, had a change in career which requires a different wardrobe, or just as a means to make some money!
If you’re interested in consigning, remember these tips:
1. Make sure that the items you're selling are in good condition and are as clean as can be. Some stores require that you even dry clean your items before you bring them in. Nobody wants to buy something that LOOKS like it's been used.
2. Clothing consignment stores often don't continuously take in new items. They'll usually take in items at the beginning of a season. Call ahead and book your appointment early to maximize your clothes' exposure in the store.
3. Check out a few consignment stores before deciding where you'd like to consign your items. Is the store packed so that you can't even see the merchandise? Is there a lot of traffic? Would you shop there yourself? Choose a store that fits with the type of item you're selling, and ideally one that you would frequent yourself.
4. Understand the terms of the consignment agreement and get it in writing. The percentage that you make from selling varies from store to store, and some places even take an administration fee for their services, or will reduce the selling price of your clothes after a certain period of time. Getting the contract in writing will make sure there's no confusion when it's time to get paid.
All she needs to know for now! ;)